SHSU President Says Free Speech Wall Vandalism by Professor ‘Under Investigation’

By September 27, 2011

The past few days have brought public scrutiny to bear on Sam Houston State University (SHSU) after its police department not only failed to address student complaints over a professor’s vandalism—with a box cutter—of their "free speech wall," but also threatened to charge the students with disorderly conduct on the basis of four-letter words written on the wall. 

Late in the day on September 23, while readers nationwide were learning of the case in outlets such as The Daily Caller, SHSU President Dana Gibson sent a brief response to FIRE’s letter. Here it is in full:

Sam Houston State University respects the principles of freedom of speech. In addition, the university supports the rights of individuals and organizations to exercise freedom of speech. The incident that occurred on Thursday, September 22nd between a member of the faculty and the student organizations that sponsored the ‘Free Speech Wall,’ is currently under investigation.

FIRE will keep Torch readers updated on SHSU’s investigation, and hopes SHSU will remember its clear-cut obligations under the First Amendment.     

Schools: Sam Houston State University Cases: Sam Houston State University: Faculty Member Takes Box Cutter to Students’ Free Speech Wall; Police Threaten Students with Misdemeanor